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U-31 Soccer Manga Gets Live-Action Film This Summer

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Manga by Giant Killing author centers on 31-year-old pro soccer player

Author Masaya Tsunamoto (Giant Killing) and artist Motoki Yoshihara's (Segoku Basara 4, Sengoku Basara 4 - Bontenmaru-hen) U-31 soccer manga is getting a live-action film adaptation that will open in Japan this summer.

The manga follows Atsuhiko Kōno, a soccer player who represented Japan in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and had high expectations to become a star player. Now in 2002, he is 31 and has somehow slipped into obscurity. One day, he receives a notice from his champion team that they are canceling his contract. Atsuhiko is offered a new contract for his former team JEM Chiba, and it is there that he wagers his comeback. However, he's known on his new team as the "former Japan representative," and his young teammates make fun of him and treat him coldly because he's still wearing the #10 jersey even though they think he's past his prime. Through all this, Atsuhiko silently continues to practice in hopes of making a comeback.

The film will star:

Ryōma Baba (Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters' Ryuji Iwasaki/Blue Buster) as Atsuhiko Kōno

Yūichi Nakamura (live-action Moyashimon: Tales of Agriculture's Tadayasu Sawaki, Kamen Rider Den-O's Yuto Sakurai/Kamen Rider Zeronos) as a rival player

Ren Osugi

Masanobu Katsumura

Mitsuki Tanimura

The film is being made to celebrate the 25th anniversary of JEF United Ichihara Chiba, which is a professional soccer club that plays in the Japan League Division 2.

Tsunamoto and Yoshihara published the two-volume manga irregularly in Kodansha's Morning magazine in 2002-2004. Tsunamoto's Giant Killing manga inspired a TV anime adaptation in 2010.

Source: Comic Natalie

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